7-Eleven reaches private label coffee milestone
With the introduction of its store branded El Salvador Bourbon Single Origin coffee, Irving, Texas-based 7-Eleven said it now brews more than half its coffee from Rainforest Alliance Certified beans. Its El Salvador Bourbon Single Origin brew is not only the latest premium offering in its Seven Reserve line of specially curated coffees, it’s the first to be sourced directly from independent family farmers and the seventh to carry the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal.
Available at participating stores, the new coffee has a subtle orange blossom aroma and a well-balanced flavor with a sweet citrus zest and rich caramel finish, according to 7-Eleven. A medium roast highlights the distinctive tasting notes.
Bourbon refers to a coffee varietal grown in El Salvador that produces high-quality Arabica beans with a smooth and distinctive taste. After disease devastated the country's coffee production, many local farmers planted Bourbon coffee cherry trees to replace the lost crops and have helped the country regain much of its coffee yields, the convenience store chain said.
The 7-Eleven coffee team hand-selected the flavorful coffee beans from Tacubaya Estate Coffee Farms, an eight-generation family farm located in the highlands of El Salvador.
"This single-origin coffee is a true 'farm-to-cup' experience that coffee lovers can only get at 7-Eleven stores," said Michelle Cram, 7-Eleven’s senior platform manager for hot beverages. "El Salvador Bourbon also celebrates a unique time in 7-Eleven history, as we have completed a direct trade by meeting with the coffee farmers. We worked closely with our roasting partners to identify the ideal roast level for this specific bean to ensure we were offering our coffee customers the absolute best cup possible."
7-Eleven continues to grow its portfolio of sustainable coffees, which now account for well over half of its green coffee purchases. Since 2016, 7-Eleven has introduced Rainforest Alliance Certified coffees from Nicaragua, Mexico, Peru, Sumatra and Colombia as well as an African blend from Ethiopia and Rwanda, all responsibly grown. 7-Eleven said single-origin 100% Colombian Rainforest Alliance Certified coffee is now a permanent offering and a top seller on the hot beverage bar.
The Rainforest Alliance is an international nonprofit organization that seeks to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods. Carrying the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal with the little green frog means the 100% Arabica beans are sourced from coffee-growers whose farms must meet strict standards designed to protect the environment, conserve wildlife and promote the well-being of local communities.
"We know our customers care about coffee crops that are responsibly grown and sourced from small farms," Cram added.
7-Eleven, which operates, franchises and/or licenses more than 69,000 stores in 17 countries including 11,800 in North America, said future Seven Reserve coffees will include both exotic blends and single-origin brews from top growing areas around the world.
7-Eleven is known for its store brands such as Slurpee, Big Bite, Big Gulp and its 7-Select brand, which includes healthy options, decadent treats and everyday favorites. It has also expanded its grab-and-go ready-to-eat offerings.